Everyday activities can determine how your posture is shaped. Poor posture can be developed by sitting for long hours, using phones and tablets excessively, working on a computer, exercising improperly, or standing for long periods of time. And—if you haven’t felt the effects of poor posture—it’s only a matter of time before pain and discomfort hits.
So, what does poor posture look like? It’s described as having poor spinal alignment in the neck and back regions.
While poor posture can cause joint pain and general discomfort, it can also impact physiological functions in the body. Poor posture can affect breathing patterns, mood, hormone balance, blood pressure, pulse rate, headache, and a higher risk of mortality. Athletic performance and your ability to perform day-to-day activities are also significantly affected by poor posture.
Fortunately, the solution to poor posture is simple. For starters, consider changing the position of your chair at your desk, limiting the amount of time spent on your phone or tablet, or taking breaks to get up and walk around for a few minutes can cause a drastic reduction in symptoms experienced from poor posture.
You can also try these four exercises to help with common posture issues that could limit your health and performance.
1 - SHOULDER RETRACTION
Place your hands behind your head and pull your elbows back while bringing your shoulders blades together. Hold your shoulders blades together for a few seconds. Starts with 3 sets of 5 repetitions.
2 - CHEST STRETCH
Place both hands on either side of a doorway a few inches higher than your shoulder height. While keeping your arms straight, walk forward until you feel a light stretch in your chest and shoulders. Hold the stretch for up to 30 seconds and complete 3 sets.
3 - HIP FLEXOR STRETCHES
Take a step forward with one leg and bend your front knee. Lunge down until your back knee is resting on the ground. Push your hips forward until a stretch in the upper top part of your hip is felt.
4 - GLUTE HIP BRIDGE
While lying on your back, bent your knees so your feet are flat on the floor. Keep your arms flat on the floor by your side and slowly elevate your hips off the ground until shoulders, hips, and knees are aligned. Slower your hips back to the ground. Perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions.